The Bounty thread was very extensive coverage of he testimony day by day. I for one watched the live stream every day.
Dave, I didn't hang in on the Bounty thread long enough to learn the hearings were televised. Those threads just seemed to go on forever and I don't enjoy those kinds of threads (Bounty, Rule 62, etc.)
So yes the Captain ultimately was to blame. But here are other culpabilities which may lead to future lawsuits as well as regulations of a display vs seagoing vessel and how they can be held or CG inspection.
I agree there is blame to go around - particularly to the yard and the owner. But as I said in my earlier post I just felt an overwhelming anger toward the captain as I read the notes from the hearing.
By their own account the yard did shoddy work. I wouldn't nail good plywood over rotted frames on a lawn shed let alone a large ship heading to sea. But the captain was aware of what the yard was doing. He was aware of the condition of his pumps, he was aware of the leaks. Yes he had pressure from the owners. But ultimately he was the one with years of experience as a professional captain of a tall ship. He was aware of just how dangerous his boat was. He chose to take that ship to sea, in a hurricane - in a god damned hurricane. It's a miracle the entire crew wasn't lost. They likely would have been but for the Coast Guard who's live were also put in danger by the absolute recklessness of this man.
That's what I took away from the account of the hearings and writing this over coffee this morning I'm angry all over again.
Should the yard and the owners be held accountable for their parts in this? Absolutely. But the ultimate responsibility falls on a captain who paid the ultimate price.
And none of it was necessary...